Tuesday 12 May 2015
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki exhibits ANZAC: Photographs by Laurence Aberhart from 30 May to 6 December 2015.
A major exhibition of more than 60 prints, ANZAC includes photographs from more than three decades of Aberhart’s work, and features poignant images of World War I (WWI) cenotaphs from across New Zealand and Australia.
Giving unique insight to the memorialisation of war, each of Aberhart’s images focuses on a monument of a single ANZAC figure, all photographed using an old-fashioned view camera, long exposures and available light.
Auckland Art Gallery Director Rhana Devenport says the exhibition quietly evokes the local significance of the ANZAC forces.
‘It shows how communities throughout New Zealand and Australia were affected by WWI, and provides a space to meditate and reflect on the universal effects of war,’ says Devenport.
The ANZAC relationship is built on bonds formed on WWI’s battlefields, and marks a significant turning point in the histories of New Zealand and Australia, as their peoples became increasingly aware of the differences between themselves and their ‘homeland’ (Great Britain) compatriots.
Devenport says commemorating the WWI centenary through the arts is important.
‘Artists such as Aberhart give us a new perspective with which we can look upon the legacy of war. Through their eyes, we find both proximity and distance, and a space in which to consider the profound personal and national impacts of conflict.’
Laurence Aberhart is regarded as one of New Zealand’s most important photographers. For close to 40 years, he has produced a body of work unrivalled in its intensity, richness and layers of cultural and photographic history.
ANZAC: Photographs by Laurence Aberhart is a Dunedin Public Art Gallery touring exhibition. It was launched at the DPAG on 12 April 2014 as part of the 2014 WWI commemorations and is subsequently touring the country.
The works will be displayed over two floors at Auckland Art Gallery and entry to the exhibition is free.